Heyy guys! I hope you’re doing well and excited to chat with me on this hot topic. I watched Black is King last month and thoroughly enjoyed it. As descibed on Disneyplus.com, ‘The visual album for Beyonce reimagines the lessons of Lion King for today’s young kings and queens in search of their own crowns.’ It is the visual for Lion King: The Gift Album released in 2019.
It is an amazing work of art and watching it was the first time I have seen an American artist portray ancient and modern African religions and cultures on a global scale. The visuals, cinematography, outfits, hairstyles, African locations, choreography, featured artists were all ON POINT. What didn’t Beyonce give us in this? Songs like Bigger and Brown Skin Girl made me shed tears as they are empowering to marginalised people around the world. Especially young brown skin girls, who have grown up without love for the colour of their skin.
So you can imagine my surprise when the morning after I watched it, the narrative around this beautiful visual had been lost. Instead, it had shifted to discussions around Spirituality amongst Christians (mostly Nigerians) on my timeline. I started seeing posts like ‘Beyonce is a witch’, ‘Black is King is demonic’… and I was confused. This is the same film I watched and acknowledged that Beyonce did showcase elements of ancient Yoruba religion (like in the visual for Bigger), but no harm was done.